VICTORIA KONEFAL IN LOOT & RIOT MAGAZINE
Starring in such an iconic series like Days of our Lives takes moxie, it’s one of the longest running scripted series in the world. You’ve truly become Ciara Brady. How did you prepare for your role? I approached it the way I would any other project. I tried not to psyche myself out by focusing on the magnitude of what I was stepping into. I did my research on her experiences and relationships with different people in Salem and tried to make it work. I also tried to integrate some of Bo’s personality traits into Ciara. I knew that was something of great importance to the viewers, and I wanted to honor their loyalty to the show.
Ciara seems to be talented but troubled. What are some of her key obstacles and how is she working to overcome them? She is dealing with overcoming a sexual assault, and right now she’s not quite sure how to battle those demons. She is taking her time to heal but she’s confused and its starting to get in the way of her personal relationships. It’s going to take a while, but one of the amazing things about Ciara is that she is tough as nails and her willpower to succeed in the healing process will hopefully surpass any trauma she may face. She’s a fighter.
What are some glaring similarities between yourself and Ciara? What would you say are the major differences? Ciara and I are similar in that we are both selfless, loving, and compassionate people. We would do anything for the ones we love and I’m proud to have that in common with her. I will say that I’m a lot more mature than she is, we are the same age but sometimes I feel like I’m mentally 65-years-old. Then again, I’m very capable of acting like a seven-year-old sometimes (Laughs!). It just depends on my mood.
You played an addict on The Wrong Crush, you’re the horrific antagonist in Fog City, and you even guest stared on Modern Family, one of TV’s best comedies. To what do you attribute your versatility as an actress? Honestly, luck. I’m very fortunate to have found versatility in my career, especially in an industry that tends to typecast. My agents get me auditions in every genre and I always go even if it isn’t my cup of tea. I don’t like limiting myself and every audition is a learning experience in itself. It’s important to step out of your comfort zone in your craft. The only way you can improve is by challenging yourself.
Which do you find the most challenging to capture character-wise while telling a compelling story – horror, drama, or comedy? And as dream roles go, do you have a particular preference between the three? Drama. Even though I do it every day, it’s difficult to let those walls down and be vulnerable in front of a production team, let alone the millions of viewers at home. As far as my dream roles, I want to play a badass athletic lead. Whether it be something like “Million Dollar Baby” or “I Tonya”, I want to have something that my character is crazy about. I also can’t wait to do something that’s based on a true story.
What advantageous edge does your performing arts background afford you? From Jennifer Aniston and Al Pacino, to Adrien Brody and even Nicki Minaj, some of the industries most accomplished entertainers are cut from the same LaGuardia High cloth as you. I look back on my high school years and I wish I appreciated them more at the time. I mean, of course, I appreciated it, I just didn’t know how blessed I was to be receiving an education like that. I’m confident in what I learned and took from my experience there and am proud to be an alumni.
Do you feel the “Me Too” movement and its significance has successfully solved the gender discrimination issues going forward, or do we still have a long way to go as a culture in Hollywood? We still have a long way to go, but we’ve been incredibly progressive so I’m hopeful. It saddens me that this is even an issue, but unfortunately, these are the cards women were dealt. I don’t think the world was prepared for women to stand in solidarity with such strength. That’s why I feel the notion of feminism is being criticized in society. People still think that, that word is ugly, but it ultimately motivates us further so the joke’s on them.
Common life goals range from love and happiness, to wealth and success. What, for you, is the unifying theme that bonds it all and sort of centers everything in your life? Love. Love is the greatest thing humans have to offer and I’ve firmly believed that since I was a child. I’m not talking about love in a relationship, although it’s a beautiful thing to find with another person. I’m talking about exuding love to the world and living with it in your heart everyday no matter how rough life can get. It’s so important to remain positive and to treat people with the respect you want to receive. Love is the light in all of our lives, so shine on baby.